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Welwyn Garden City pre-schoolers have won a prestigious silver award for their efforts to turn Rowan Tree Day Nursery a deeper shade of environmental green.
The Ofsted–rated ‘Outstanding’ day nursery in Guessens Road is not only powered with green electricity, and well on the way to ‘zero waste to landfill’, it has an Eco-Committee of practitioners and children organising initiatives like planting and tending vegetables for sale; monitoring food waste and gathering plastic bottles to construct a special greenhouse.
Celebrating the internationally recognised Eco-schools Silver Award for excellence in environmental activity, Manager Claire Ovenden praised both children and parents for their enthusiastic support of the eco-friendly projects at the Nursery.
“Our parents are wonderful in supplying us with materials for recycling and crafting and continuing the activities at home and the children are having fun, using their imaginations and learning so much about maths, science, the environment as they go,” she said.
Awarded £300 in vouchers for their Bronze and Silver Eco-Schools Awards by company bosses at the award-winning, employee owned Childbase Partnership, the nursery Eco-Committee is looking forward to buying more resources to upgrade growing areas in the garden.
Upcoming environmental projects include the children making useable crafting paper from old newspapers and growing fruit, vegetables and flowers to sell at the nursery’s annual summer fete in July.
The scheme was originally introduced for the nursery pre-school room – where children also weigh leftovers after meals to help staff reduce waste which is currently collected for anaerobic digestion - but children as young as two are now enjoying their own age-appropriate growing spaces.
“Respecting and protecting the environment is an important part of our commitment to give our children the best possible future but we have been surprised by just how many children are fully engaged in these projects,” said Claire.
Eco-Schools aims to help make every school in the country sustainable and to bring about behaviour change in young people, and those connected to them, so that good habits learned in schools are followed through into homes and communities.